Wow, holy crap (no pun intended). I hate being someone who passes on Urban Legends but apparently I have been. I ran over to Snopes and typed in John Wayne and sure enough the rumor floating around about his colon and 80 lbs of crap was just that - crap! Take a peek "John Wayne Urban Legend".
I don't proliferate email spam. I certainly don't want to do that here so I'm so glad you brought this up because it compelled me to find it for myself. Thank you.
For the most part, I have a difficult time believing even "legitimate sounding" information because no one really knows most of these things and so many people (including experts) just make stuff up! So, we're back to where we SHOULD be and that's to research things for ourselves and then to present the truth.